The Stained Glass – A Scene In-Between 1965-1967 (2013) review

March 12, 2014

The Stained Glass – A Scene In-Between 1965-1967 (2013) review

The Stained Glass “A Scene In-Between 1965-1967” (Ace Records/Big Beat, 2013)
Another long-anticipated collection and part of the ongoing
“Nuggets From the Golden State” series is this, an excellent
reappraissal of the works done by San Jose-based mid-sixties outfit The Stained
We’re fortunate too that expert compiler and chronicler Alec
Palao saw to it that some of the earlier material – recorded while the group
were still operating under the name The Trolls – has also been included. Two of
the best items from that juncture, the unmissable ‘Walkin’ Shoes’ – a
tough-sounding 1966 garage r&b style original written by prolific bass
player Jim McPherson, and also the chimingly cool tones of ‘No Rhyme Or
Reason’, penned by the group’s rhythm guitarist and early group figurehead,
Roger Hedge, will have you craving more.
There was certainly no shortage of convincingly strong
material available for the group to work up, impress their fanbase within the
live club setting and, ultimately, to then lay down for posterity in the
recording studio. So it really is wholly surprising when, after the group
changed their name to The Stained Glass and inked a record deal with the mighty
RCA empire in the autumn of ’66, they didn’t become the high-charting success
and genuine household name that they ought to have been. In particular, two
selections that I believe would’ve been more than ripe for slaughtering the
national charts with; to go head to head with some of the period’s main
contenders at the very least, are the wonderfully realised ‘My Buddy Sin’, with
its baroque-infected leanings – somewhat reminiscent of what the Left Banke
were doing over on the other coast – tumbling folk-rock encapsulations and
McPherson’s highly imaginative lyrical twists – vocalised too with conviction
and panache by drummer Dennis Carrasco. Surely this here gem deserved to be Top
of the Pops!  The woozily atmospheric
title track, ‘A Scene In-Between’, also showed that the ‘Glass was a group
whose collective ear had been tuned-in to the hip and happening changes afoot
in the pop world, and was capable of producing their own fascinating, highly
effective aural mini-movie akin to some of those amazingly weird-sounding
pre-Pepper Beatles songs!
If you’ve not yet had the pleasure, ladies and gentlemen,
may I suggest that you now pop out and score a copy of this while still
available, and then add to the list of San Jose greats – Count V, Syndicate of
Sound, and the Chocolate Watch Band – The Trolls, and, especially, The Stained
Glass. Listen with open ears and attentive mind, I trust you will not be
Review made by Lenny Helsing/2014
© Copyright http://psychedelicbaby.blogspot.com/2014
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